ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Inter-provincial Coordination (IPC) and Pakistan Sports Board (PSB) president Dr Fehmida Mirza on Thursday said that she as a federal minister seeks to hear both sides — the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) wants the Normalisation Committee (NC) — in order to conduct fair elections of the federation and revive the game in the country.

“The government wants the revival of football competitions [in the country] for the sake of fans and all steps [in this regard] must be taken for the betterment of players and officials which require due cooperation from all stakeholders,” Dr Fehmida said, while chairing a meeting with a delegation of the PFF at her office in Islamabad. The minister had invited the delegation for a meeting.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Fehmida said the government is ready to play its role to resolve the issues impeding Pakistan football as an impartial mediator.

She had also invited the NC for the said meeting but as its president Haroon Malik is currently out of the country another meeting would soon be held with the Normalisation Committee and its president to hear their stance.

During Thursday’s meeting, the PFF delegation briefed the federal minister on its stance after being banned by FIFA.

“We have not violated FIFA’s mandate. The new Normalisation Committee (NC) does not have their representation in it. NC should be properly represented, unbiased and come up with a roadmap for elections,” a press release issued by the IPC ministry after the meeting quoted the members of the PFF delegation as saying.

The meeting was attended by IPC secretary, PSB vice-president and its director general.

Published in Dawn, April 16th, 2021

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